BG chosen to participate in Relay for Life, Cancer Prevention Study

Bowling Green is one of three cities in Ohio chosen to participate in CPS-3, a nationwide study to better understand lifestyle, behavioral, environmental and genetic factors that cause and prevent cancer.

The study, which was started in 2005 by the American Cancer Society, has been implemented across the nation and is only being conducted this year at the Relay for Life events in Bowling Green, Boardman Township and Madison.

Relay for Life takes place overnight while community members come together to celebrate cancer survivors and remember those lost to cancer by taking turns walking or running laps throughout the night.

According to the American Cancer Society, the goal of CPS-3 is to ultimately eliminate cancer as a major health problem for this and future generations.

“I think this is a great opportunity to be able to participate in a study that will have such an impact on the livelihood of the future,” said Rich Kramp, a previous Relay for Life participant.

The CPS-3 study is a follow-up to previous long-term studies that have linked tobacco use and obesity to increased cancer risks, said Dan Galway, a Relay for Life volunteer and the chair of the CPS-3 committee.

The American Cancer Society hopes to get 500,000 volunteers nationwide. Participants must be between the ages of 30 and 65 and have had no personal history of cancer.

“We’re trying to get as many people as possible,” Galway said.

In Bowling Green, enrollment will take place on Friday, May 16, 2008, at Bowling Green High School from 6 to 10 p.m.

At this time participants will complete a brief survey, sign a consent form and provide a waist measurement and small blood sample.

“The American Cancer Society thought signing up for the study at Relay for Life would be a great way to target people already involved,” said Laura Libbe of the American Cancer Society. “We want the study large enough to be accredited,” she said.

Every two years, participants will be sent a questionnaire that takes approximately 45 minutes to fill out. Follow-up questions for updated information will be asked over a span of 20 to 30 years.

Sometimes people don’t want to come out because there is an expense, Galway said, but volunteering for the study costs nothing.

Bowling Green was selectively chosen to gather participants because its Relay for Life has been very successful in the past.

According to Libbe, last year’s event attracted 55 teams and totaled 1,076 people.

This year, 172 participants have already signed up, raising $18,599.14.

Relay for Life is still 51 days away and Galway encourages people to participate in the event even if they don’t want to participate in the study.